Occidental College is one of the West Coast’s oldest and most reputable liberal arts schools. Barack Obama attended for two years and its picturesque setting near the heart of Los Angeles has made it an ideal backdrop for dozens of films, including “Clueless” and “Orange County.” Needless to say, it has a national profile.
That’s why Occidental’s women’s lacrosse team isn’t concerning itself with the NCAA tournament, despite a program-best 4-1 start and wins over two 2011 NCAA tournament teams.
“I think there’s a healthy detachment from a lot of that stuff,” said Occidental coach Michele Uhlfelder. “That’s important to being at your max performing level and not putting a lot of extra stuff in your head. It’s uncontrollable. In my career I’ve always just focused on the controllable.”
And while the NCAAs aren’t on Occidental’s mind, the NCAA should probably start thinking about Occidental.
“Those schools have had national recognition, and certainly from the perspective of the lacrosse world and the evolution of our team they were significant wins,” Uhlfelder said. “We approach every game the same way. The name on the jersey doesn’t dictate how we rank ourselves.”
So it was no surprise that five days after dispatching Adrian, Occidental took care of business against winless conference foe Whittier, 20-11.